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With chofen foot his paffage to forelay :
And place an ambush in the winding way.
Thou, with thy Volfcians, face the Thufcan horfe :-
The brave Meffapus fhall thy troops inforce;
With those of Tibur; and the Latian band:
Subjected all to thy fupreme command.
This faid, he warns Meffapus to the war:
chief exhorts, with equal care.
All thus encourag'd, his own troops he joins,
And haftes to profecute his deep defigns.
Inclos'd with hills, the winding valley lies,
By nature form'd for fraud, and fitted for furprize;
A narrow track, by human steps untrode,
Leads, through perplexing thorns, to this obfcure abode. High o'er the vale a steepy mountain ftands:
Whence the furveying fight the nether ground commands. The top is level: an offenfive feat
Of war; and from the war a fafe retreat.
For, on the right and left, is room to press
The foes at hand, or from afar diftrefs:
To drive them headlong downward; and to pour,
On their defcending backs, a ftony flower.
Thither young Turnus took the well-known way;
Poffefs'd the pass, and in blind ambush lay.
Mean time, Latonian Phoebe, from the skies,
Beheld th' approaching war with hateful eyes,
And call'd the light-foot Opis to her aid,
Her most belov'd, and ever-trufty maid.
Then with a figh began: Camilla goes
To meet her death, amidst her fatal foes.
The nymph I lov'd of all my mortal train;
Invefted with Diana's arms, in vain.
Nor is my kindness for the virgin, new,
'Twas born with her, and with her years it grew : Her father Metabus, when forc'd away
From old Privernum, for tyrannic fway;
Snatch'd up, and fav'd from his prevailing foes,
This tender babe, companion of his woes.
Cafmilla was her mother; but he drown'd
One hiffing letter in a fofter found,
And call'd Camilla. Through the woods he flies
Wrapt in his robe the royal infant lies.
His fees in fight,' he mends his weary pace;
With fhouts and clamours they pursue the chace.
The banks of Amafcene at length he gains;
The raging flood his farther plight restrains :
Rais'd o'er the borders with unufual rains.
Prepar'd to plunge into the ftream, he fears:
Not for himfelf, but for the charge he bears.
Anxious he ftops a while; and thinks in hafte;
Then, defperate in diftrefs, refolves at laft.
A knotty lance of well-boil'd oak he bore;
The middle part with cork he cover'd o'er :
He clos'd the child within the hollow space :
With twigs of bending ofier bound the cafe.
Then pois'd the fpear, heavy with human weight:
And thus invok'd my favour for the freight :
Accept, great goddefs of the woods, he said,
Sent by her fire, this dedicated maid:
Through air fhe flies a fuppliant to thy shrine. ;
And the first weapons that she knows, are thine.
He faid; and with full force the spear he threw;
Above the founding waves Camilla flew.
Then, prefs'd by foes, he stemm'd the stormy tide
And gain'd, by stress of arms, the farther fide.
His faften'd spear he pull'd from out the ground;
And, victor of his vows, his infant nymph unbound.
Nor after that, in towns which walls inclofe,
Would truft his hunted life amidft his foes.
But rough, in open air he chofe to lie:
Earth was his couch, his covering was the sky.
On hills unhorn, or in a defart den,
He fhunn'd the dire fociety of men.
A fhepherd's folitary life he led :
His daughter with the milk of mares he fed;
The dugs of bears, and every favage beast,
He drew, and through her lips the liquor prefs'd.
The little Amazon could fcarcely go,
He loads her with a quiver and a bow :
And, that the might her staggering fteps command,
He with a flender javelin fills her hand :
Her flowing hair no golden fillet bound;
Nor fwept her trailing robe the dusty ground.
Instead of these, a tiger's hide o'erspread
Her back and fhoulders, faften'd to her head.
The flying dart she first attempts to fling;
And round her tender temples tofs'd the fling :
Then, as her strength with years increas'd, began
To pierce aloft in air the foaring fwan:
And from the clouds to fetch the heron and the crane.
The Tufcan matrons with each other vy'd,
To bless their rival fons with fuch a bride:
But the difdains their love; to fhare with me
The fylvan fhades, and vow'd virginity.
And oh! I wish, contented with my cares
Of favage spoils, fhe had not fought the wars:
Then had the been of my celeftial train;
And fhunn'd the fate that dooms her to be flain.
But fince, oppofing heaven's decree, fhe goes
To find her death among forbidden foes;
Haste with these arms, and take thy steepy flight,
Where, with the gods adverse, the Latins fight:
This bow to thee, this quiver, I bequeath,
This chofen arrow to revenge her death:
By whate'er hand Camilla shall be slain,
Or of the Trojan, or Italian train,
Let him not pass unpunish'd from the plain.
Then, in a hollow cloud, myself will aid,
To bear the breathlefs body of my maid:
Unspoil'd shall be her arms, and unprophan'd 890
Her holy limbs with any human hand :
And in a marble tomb laid in her native land.
She faid: the faithful Nymph defcends from high
With rapid flight, and cuts the founding sky :
Black clouds and ftormy winds around her body fly.
By this, the Trojan and the Tuscan horse,
Drawn up in fquadrous, with united force,
Approach the walls; the fprightly courfers bound;
Prefs forward on their bitts, and shift their ground:
Shields, arms, and spears, flash horribly from far;
And the fields glitter with a waving war.
› Oppos'd to thefe, come on with furious force
Meffapus, Coras, and the Latian horfe;
Thefe in the body plac'd; on either hand
Sustain'd, and clos'd by fair Camilla's band.
Advancing in a line, they couch their spears;
And lefs and less the middle space appears.
Thick fmoke obfcures the field: and fcarce are feen
The neighing courfers, and the shouting men.
In distance of their darts they stop their course;
Then man to man they rufh, and horse to horse.
The face of heaven their flying javelins hide :
And deaths unfeen are dealt on either fide.
Tyrrhenus, and Aconteus, void of fear,
By mettled courfers borne in full career,
Meet first oppos'd: and, with a mighty shock,
Their horfes heads against each other knock.
Far from his fteed is fierce Aconteus caft.;
As with an engine's force, or lightning's blaft:
He rolls along in blood, and breathes his last. 920
The Latin fquadrons take a sudden fright;
And fling their fhields behind, to fave their backs in flight.
Spurring at fpeed to their own walls they drew ;
Ciofe in the rear the Tufcan troops purfue,
And urge their flight; Afylas leads the chace;
Till feiz'd with fhame they wheel about, and face:
Receive their foes, and raise a threatening cry.
The Tufcans take their turn to fear and fly.¡
So fwelling furges, with a thundering roar,
Driven on each other's backs, infult the fhore;